Virtual Reality: Poised to Bring Big Changes to Education? – Todd Richmond and ICT Tech in Education Week

Published: February 3, 2016
Category: News

An article about the growing trend of using virtual reality in education featured ICT’s InVerse viewer and quoted Todd Richmond, ICT’s director of advanced prototype development, about a recent IEEE survey that identified education as the industry most likely to benefit from the widespread adoption of virtual or augmented reality.
Richmond said that in 15 or 20 years, these technologies will be “like tables and chairs”—infrastructure that is part of the classroom. “Look at computers,” he said. “They had a small place in the classroom. Now they’re in every classroom.”
In the meantime, he foresees schools setting up virtual reality labs, with a few devices, much like schools once relied upon computer labs, within the next few years.
“The content is a harder piece,” Richmond said. “That’s where the biggest cost is going to be, and where the biggest contribution from outside providers is going to be.” Students and teachers will generate their own user-generated content, too, which will be uploaded to a large-scale repository like YouTube, he said.
And then, there are the age-old K-12 questions to be solved by educators: “While this [VR and AR] gives increased experiential advantage to students…how does it fit into the curriculum? What do you do with that content? And how does that fit with our lesson plans?” he asked.
Richmond explained that the InVerse clips onto a tablet and creates the same effect as a Google Cardboard, he said. “The top part is an immersive 3D (experience), and the bottom half of the display can show text, videos, or be a virtual joystick controller so you can control what you’re viewing,” Richmond explained.